Rock News: Music's high and low notes

By JOHN SWENSON, United Press International
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The Dave Matthews Band's "Busted Stuff" album debuted at No. 1 on The Billboard 200 this week, pushing aside rapper Nelly's "Nellyville," which held the No. 2 slot after three weeks at the top. "Busted Stuff" (RCA) sold 622,000 units, according to Nielsen SoundScan.


In nine albums over the group's career, only the triple platinum "Everyday" had a bigger opening week. The Vines also checked in with a strong debut -- the Australian rockers sold 64,000 units to clock in at No. 11 on the U.S. Billboard charts.


Little Richard, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Sheryl Crow and Keb' Mo' all contributed tracks to the upcoming Johnny Cash tribute album. "Kindred Spirits," due out Sept. 24, was produced by former Cash bandmember Marty Stuart, who was married to Cash's daughter, Cindy, and played in Cash's band in the early 1980s.


"My vision from the start has been to portray Johnny Cash the songwriter," Stuart said. "He's such a poignant and insightful writer and this has never been done. In the likeness of Johnny, each artist brought their own interpretation to the songs. Johnny's renegade spirit transcends throughout the project."

Keb' Mo' covered "Folsom Prison Blues" country blues-style, Springsteen brought his distinctive touch to "Give My Love to Rose" and Little Richard pulled out all the stops on "Get Rhythm." Dylan selected a lesser-known gem, "Train of Love," while Crow joined Mary Chapin Carpenter and Emmylou Harris to sing "Flesh and Blood."


"Scarlet's Walk," Tori Amos' debut for Epic Records due Oct. 29, is a "sonic novel" that takes the listener on an aural journey of America's past as seen through the eyes of the title character. Amos produced the album in Cornwall, England, with help from longtime collaborators Jon Evans on bass and Matt Chamberlain (Bowie, Fiona Apple) on drums.

The record's first single, "A Sorta Fairytale," will be serviced to radio in mid-September. In support of the album, Amos will embark on a headlining tour of the United States this fall with international dates to follow.



Former Beatle Paul McCartney and former Beach Boy Brian Wilson are both scheduled to participate in a benefit aimed at eliminating landmines around the world. The Los Angeles event, scheduled for Sept. 18, is organized by McCartney's wife, Heather Mills. Jay Leno is scheduled to host the show.

The benefit is designed to raise awareness for the Adopt-A-Minefield initiative that clears and provides assistance to survivors affected by forgotten weapons. McCartney and his band will perform in advance of the Sept. 21 renewal of their U.S. tour, while Wilson will be backed by the Wondermints, who recently played with him on a recreation of the Beach Boys' 1966 album "Pet Sounds."


Rhino Home Video is releasing a behind-the-scene DVD starring Austrailian rockers Silverchair, "Across the Night: The Creation of Diorama."

The DVD follows the band through the production of the platinum-selling recording. It follows songwriter Daniel Johns through the creation of original demos, fine tuning the songs at his home and then working with arrangers, such as the legendary Van Dyke Parks, as they make the recordings. It follows the group to Los Angeles for the mixing of the album and joins the band behind the scenes as members prepare to unveil their new material live in concert.


Included are in-depth interviews with Johns, along with fellow bandmates Ben Gillies (drums) and Chris Joannou (bass).

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